Step Into a Magical World: Top 3 Children’s Movies Based on Books

The big screen is often our gateway to a whole other world – and when it comes to children’s movies, this world is often filled with magic and excitement. If you are looking for movies that will offer this kind of entertainment, check out these fun options that will introduce your children to a different, magical universe.

Wow Said The Owl Board Book by Tim Hopgood

Harry Potter

This series of no less than eight movies is based on the internationally celebrated Harry Potter book series by JK Rowling. The novels, which have received several awards, have been widely credited for re-introducing a whole generation to reading – and it was only a matter of time before they would get a film adaptation. Taking on the heavy task of doing visual justice to the magical universe that Rowling’s imagination has created, the Harry Potter movies navigate a world where wizards and witches co-exist with goblins, elves, and non-magical people (dubbed Muggles) as well as a bunch of magical creatures, including unicorns, centaurs, and dragons. The series revolves around Harry’s adventures in Hogwarts, the magical school he attends, always accompanied by his trusted friends Hermione and Ron, as they battle the forces of evil – as well as adolescence. Beware that the films adopt an increasingly darker tone as Harry himself grows up every year and comes of age, with the plot getting more serious with each instalment: it’s important to make sure that the movies your children watch are age-appropriate.


Jumanji, the 1995 film adaptation of a 1981 children’s book, has attained cult status when it comes to family movies. It tells the tale of a board game with supernatural powers that brings the moves that players make to life, usually in the form of jungle-themed dangers. It was so popular that it has inspired two sequels, 2005 Zathura and 2017 Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle, as well as a wide range of Jumanji-inspired games, including a board game and a Jumanji slot. This tries to convey the thrill and excitement of the jungle as per the original story, through features such as “Sticky vines” and themed wilds. The movie stars Robin Williams as protagonist Alan, the adult version of a young boy trapped in the Jumanji world, and Kirsten Dunst as Judy Sheperd, the young girl that discovers the game with her brother and begins playing it again, setting off a series of hazardous events.


Who doesn’t love Matilda? The critically acclaimed 1988 novel has been loved by children – and adults – all around the world, as have most of the books by renowned British author Roald Dahl, including Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and The BFG. Its 1996 film adaptation stars Mara Wilson as the lead character, seven-year-old prodigy Matilda who loves books and learning but is constantly berated by her obnoxious parents and brother and is tortured by an abusive principal at school, Miss Agatha Trunchbull. Her gentle and loving teacher, Miss Honey, appreciates Matilda’s genius and kindness, and Matilda soon discovers she has magical powers that help her protect herself and bring justice to those who have wronged her. The movie, also starring Danny DeVito as Matilda’s father, reignited the interest for the book, and its success even contributed to the creation of a Matilda musical.

There are plenty more children movies based on books – like the Narnia chronicles, or film adaptations of Roald Dahl’s other books – but these three deserve a spot on the top of the list for an evening of quality family time.


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